Arts & crafts projects for sunny and rainy days

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Now that the holidays are here, we need the most playful activities to keep the language your children learnt during the school term alive and help them use the words they have learnt in various contexts.

In our series of readers for young learners (Helbling Young Readers and The Thinking Train) you will find a project at the end of each book. These one-page projects are arts & crafts activities or board games which will help you end the reading sessions in a playful way, connecting the story with your immediate environment and creating something that not only serve as toys but also remind you of different elements of the story. Here are our favourite projects for cooler, rainy days and warmer, sunny days. Some of them will work well inside the house and some you can also take or make outside.

This week we select our favourite projects from the Helbling Young Readers series. You will find each project at the end of the readers or you can download them from the Helbling Young Readers website.

PROJECTS FOR SUNNY DAYS

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1 Make a sand bottle

What’s the story?

Anna is very happy. It is a beautiful day. A perfect day for the beach. But Nina is not happy. She is on a boat, far from the beach. This is the story of two little girls, and how a place can mean very different things to different people.

What’s the project?

Follow the instruction to make a sand bottle for your family.

Details of the book:

The Beach, written by Rick Sampedro, illustrated by Agilulfo Russo

2 Make a kite

What’s the story?

Ehud and Elisa like flying kites. One windy day Ehud’s kite goes up and he can’t see it. Ehud is sad. Then it comes down in Elisa’s garden. Elisa gives Ehud his kite and he is happy. But then Ehud and Elisa look at their fathers. Their fathers aren’t friends. They are sad. Can the children think of a way to make everyone happy?

What’s the project?

Follow the instructions to make your own kite, decorate it and fly it!

Details of the book:

The Kite, written by Rick Sampedro, illustrated by Stefano Misesti

3 Make a sunflower picture

What’s the story?

Sam loves visiting his grandad in the country and playing in the sunflower fields. One day, Sam’s grandad gives Sam some sunflower seeds. Sam plants his seeds and he waters them carefully. But the seeds do not grow. Can Grandad help?

What’s the project?

Follow the instructions to make a sunflower picture. Even better if you can also visit some sunflower fields!

Details of the book:

Sam and the Sunflower Seeds, written by Maria Cleary, illustrated by Lorenzo Sabbatini

PROJECTS FOR RAINY DAYS

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1 Make a board game

What’s the story?

Big Goat, Middle Goat and Little Goat are hungry. And there’s lots of grass on the hill on the other side of the bridge. But there’s a mean and nasty troll under the bridge. How can the three goats cross the bridge and eat the grass?

What’s the project?

Follow the instructions to make and play your own board game.

Details of the book:

The Three Goats, retold by Richard Northcott, illustrated by Stefano Misesti

2 Make a toy theatre

What’s the story?

Today Little Red Riding Hood is visiting her grandmother in the forest. In the forest there is a woodcutter and… there’s a big, bad wolf. Be careful, Little Red Riding Hood! What happens when she arrives at Grandmother’s house? And can the woodcutter arrive in time to save the little girl and her grandmother?

What’s the project?

Follow the instructions to make a toy theatre, and then act out a scene from the story. You can download the templates for the theathre from our website.

Details of the book:

Little Red Riding Hood, retold by Richard Northcott, illustrated by Catty Flores

3 Perform ‘Beauty and the Beast’

What’s the story?

When Beauty’s father picks a rose for his daughter he makes the owner of the rosebush, a terrible beast, very angry. In payment for the rose Beauty must leave her family and go to live in the beast’s castle. In time Beauty and the beast become friends. Then one day Beauty’s father falls ill and she returns home to look after him. Does she return to the beast?

What’s the project?

Download the playscript, download the Beast’s mask, follow the instructions and perform the play.

Details of the book:

Beauty and the Beast, retold by Richard Northcott, illustrated by Catty Flores

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